Pottoka: when Basque cuisine goes with finesse and creativity

This restaurant set in Paris 7th arrondissement rue de l’Exposition is such a surprise! Top chef Sebastien Gravé shares his Basque origins in an inventive and flavorful cuisine, as pleasant to enjoy as to look at. A true moment of happiness for our taste buds…

Coming in this narrow street in Paris 7th arrondissement, we couldn’t imagine we could fall on such an address!
Indeed, Pottoka is one of the restaurants we remember with a certain emotion so much the surprise and the happiness in the mouth are to be expected

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At the helm of the kitchen, Sébastien Gravé whose professional experience is impressive. As a matter of facts this young 36-year-old chef – who comes from the Basque Country – has worked at Laurent, Robuchon, Jean-Marie Gauthier in Biarritz, then at Les Fables de la Fontaine including Christian Constant who gives him ideas. An effort that paid off five months later with a Michelin star.

The cooking genius decides then to open his very own restaurant, a few steps from it, a restaurant he calls Pottoka.
Historic emblem of the rugby club Aviron Bayonnais, it represents a mascot that looks like a pony.
It’s normal for this chef in love with his origins and keen on rugby to name his restaurant after it.

Pottoka : quand la cuisine basque rime avec finesse et créativité  Pottoka : quand la cuisine basque rime avec finesse et créativité  Pottoka : quand la cuisine basque rime avec finesse et créativité  Pottoka : quand la cuisine basque rime avec finesse et créativité

Following a line with its white brick wall on which are hang some pictures related to the Basque Country, its green and grey colors, its wood… here, there’s no place for fuss, it’s all about authenticity!
We seat at the tables, the bar or on the small high-table for more intimacy.
The kitchen can be seen when we go to the toilets and we can observe the very-organized team work.
In terms of cooking, our eyes and taste buds are surprised, indisputably. We need to say that the chef thoroughly selects all the ingredients and enjoys enhancing them.

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As a starter, you have the crab meat, walnut oil zabaglione, quinoa salad with eel and green apple, the Mackerel escabeche, horseradish ice cream, feta, cucumber, peanut crisp tried and largely approved, or the beef tail and mushrooms raviolis, green asparagus raw and velouté, “Bastidarra” sheep’s milk curds.
Let’s continue with a cod in parmesan crust, eggplants, tomato powder and ramps, a pork belly, baby carrots, chorizo/citronella coulis and pine nuts crumble or the veal shank confit and head croquette, green asparagus with lard and mustard soubise sauce.

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Keep some room for the irresistible Basque delicacies such as the cheese platter and cherry jam, the Basque cake or the tantalizing kiwi from Adour, cream of Orelys chocolate, grilled corn ice cream and sesame crisp, of which I remember with emotion. All dishes are perfectly cooked, seasoned with precision and offer a very pleasant-looking set!
When it comes to wine pairing, waiters are never short of good advice.

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Prices are very affordable, especially in light of the cuisine quality.
Count €14 for starters, €22 for main courses and €12 for desserts.

Set menus are also available:

  • Lunch menu served from Monday to Friday (excluding holidays)
    • Starter à la carte + today’s special OR today’s special + dessert à la carte: €23
    • Sarter à la carte + today’s special + dessert à la carte: €28
  • Menu
    • Starter + main course + dessert: €28
  • “Surprise” degustation menu
    • 6 courses, served for the whole table: €65

Further down the street, La Pena offers the same cuisine but with a concept of “Table d’Hôtes” you can privatize for your friends.

Pottoka is a small gem we like to share with you. So much for the beauty, the finesse and the flavors of the cuisine it has, than for the attractive rates and the kindness of the staff and the chef who loves sharing his taste for cooking with generosity and his love for Basque Country.

Candice L.
Last updated on 23 April 2018

Practical information

Location

4 Rue de l'Exposition
75007 Paris 7

Access
M° Ecole Militaire

Prices
Les desserts: 12 €
Les entrées: 14 €
Les plats: 22 €
Les menus déjeuners: 23-28 €
Menu "surprise" en 6 services: 65 €

Official website
pottoka.fr

Booking
01 45 51 88 38

More information
Ouvert du lundi au dimanche

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